[Review] The Samurai Of Prog – The White Snake (And Other Grimm Tales II)

Two months after the first chapter The Samurai Of Prog release “The White Snake (And Other Grimm Tales II),” on July 09, 2021 again for the Seacrest Oy label. Composed of 6 long-running tracks, including an epic suite of over 17 minutes, the band gives continuity to the sound of the previous one, always with the help of numerous guests. The first detail that you notice, as always, is the highly sought-after cover art, the refined booklet full of very detailed explanations of all the tracks, accompanied by beautiful drawings curated by Ed Unitsky. The opener “The Tricky Fiddler” begins with pleasant violin melodies that fit on a very elaborate and impactful solid Prog structure. The band is skilled in creating engaging atmospheres and mixing multiple styles, immediately immersing us in the musical context that the album will develop. The mixes between the instruments give life to a full-bodied sound, which mixes symphonic openings and power, balancing everything perfectly. Entirely instrumental, this track gives the artists space to express their technique, the flute is also inserted in the ending which is pleasantly intertwined with the electric guitar and the violin. An atmospheric intro with dilated sounds characterizes the beginning of “Searching for the Fear” which then leaves the theme space developed on positive melodies of violin and keyboards. The tempo changes are a real added value and give the possibility to exploit the numerous instruments available to the band, skilled in intertwining and alternating them. The violin is the protagonist, alternating involving melodies with other darker ones in the central part of the piece, where it leaves the scene to the keyboards and the guitar. The wide range of sounds used here and the constant changes make this track very interesting, with high level solo cues where everyone fits in with their own personal style. “The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs” is the first song sung, with a warm and emotional vocal that fits into the context of Symphonic Prog with precision. The intensity increases with the passage of the piece, which at times recalls the compositions of Genesis, even in the vocal setting and in the keyboard phrases. In the central part the atmospheres are transformed becoming sweet and dreamy with intertwining male and female voices and then regain power and a darker touch. The second part leaves room for interesting instrumental parts and a song full of pathos perfect to tell the stories of the Brothers Grimm. With a pompous departure begins “The Traveling Musicians” which is enriched with excellent tempo changes, the Italian vocal of “Lupo” Galifi that immediately made me think of the Rosenbach Museum and the creepy 70s. The other singers who alternate with the voice also offer a great test, and the music gives emotions at each passage, many ideas all well developed and performed. We are faced with an absolute masterpiece of the modern Progressive, tracks like this are not often heard, but when you get the chance you just have to turn up the volume and close your eyes. Here we are at the epic suite “The White Snake” which starts immediately strong with intertwining keyboards and atmospheres of pure Prog with all the instruments in great evidence. The initial part is a pompous instrumental section that alternates intricate parts with other more symphonic ones, especially in the violin inserts and orchestral carpets. Constantly changing, full of excellent and highly articulated ideas and ideas, it takes advantage of all the long minutes to develop another masterpiece, a piece to be listened to over and over again. A suite that also demonstrates how Progressive music is alive and has in groups like this high-level spokespersons who have collected and brought the heritage of the 70s to the present day. Closes the album “The Tricky Fiddler – Reprise,” a short instrumental that takes up the initial track, leaving us with the desire to start listening all over again. I think I have expressed in this and the previous review all my admiration and esteem for a band that manages to convey unique emotions. This work continues the musical discourse started in the first chapter, with the difference that the tracks are of longer duration, and in my opinion falling into the category of the masterpiece. These artists and their guests deserve great applause for what they have proposed in these two albums, among the best listened to in recent years. A must listening for all Progressive sounds lovers, expectations have not only been met but also exceeded for me. Congratulations you have made me spend over 57 minutes of pure emotions, those who love music know what I mean, listen to believe.

Tracklist

1. The Tricky Fiddler (6:03)
2. Searching for the Fear (9:42)
3. The Devil with the Three Golden Hairs (10:34)
4. The Travelling Musicians (11:01)
5. The White Snake (17:37)
6. The Tricky Fiddler – Reprise (2:09)

Lineup

Marco Bernard / Basses
Kimmo Pörsti / Drums, Percussion
Steve Unruh / Vocals, Violins, Flute, Guitars

With:
Marco Grieco / Keyboards
Marcel Singor / Guitar
Marcella Arganese / Guitar
Rafael Pacha / Guitar
Carmine Capasso / Guitar
Alessandro Di Benedetti / Keyboards
Mimmo Ferri / Keyboards
Oliviero Lacagnina / Keyboards
Elisa Montaldo / Keyboards
Luca Scherani / Keyboards
Marco Vincini / Vocals
Stefano Galifi / Vocals
Alessio Calandriello / Vocals
Daniel Fäldt / Vocals
Alessandro Corvaglia / Vocals
Camilla Rinaldi / Vocals

The Samurai Of Prog |Facebook Page|Spotify|

Seacrest Oy |Official Website|

Author: Jacopo Vigezzi

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